The long-awaited European standard based on CWA 15902-1 has been approved.

Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Poland, Serbia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom formally voted for the approval and implementation of this new standard that will bring a common level of safety for stage machinery and control systems across Europe.

For almost two decades, the misalignment of stage machinery design and safety specifications created confusion and uncertainty in the market. Hence, in some countries the enforcement of basic principles for safety on machinery were nonexistent and in other countries the experience was the opposite.

Some national regulations, specifically drafted to regulate the design and use of such machineries, were exported outside of their national boundaries and became an accepted best practice. However, they did not have the formal approach to be embraced by other European countries.

These national standards and codes of practice became known—correctly or not—for the “safety status” given to machinery that was in compliance with their requirements (D8, D8 Plus, BGV-C1, Category A, Category B, etc.).

The EN 17206 analysed and conglomerated the engineering principles present in the available national standards and codes of practice related to stage machineries for lifting and motion applications with and without people in the hazard zone and for flying performers.

19 European countries are going to adopt this new standard and will review their national norms to reflect the requirements of EN17206.

This is a huge step forward for the entire event technical community.